Discovering Blended Learning and why it works

Discovering Blended Learning and why it works

Alicja Greaves King
Alicja Greaves King

Senior Content Manager

Blended Learning is becoming hugely popular, not only because of the necessity of online courses due to the lockdown, but due to the complimentary nature online courses can bring to traditional education.

Blended Learning or hybrid-education combines 'classroom' and online education, to create a superior learning process for both learners and trainers. Seeing as it's more dynamic and customisable, it's able to reach students of varying learning styles.

Types of Blended Learning

There are many different types to consider, depending on the learning set-up, the learners, the availability of the trainers and so on... let’s go through the options.

Rotation Model - When learners in a single department are taught predominantly at work but are given online work at the trainer's discretion. Used when a single course must be quickly learned and implemented.

Flex Model - Similar to rotation but the exchange between face-to-face learning is more fluid. Usually the breakdown is more 50/50. This style is used when a course must be taught but doesn't have a set deadline, or the topic concerns software.

A la carte Model - A more relaxed approach where the learners choose whether to take a course online or face-to-face. This model usually concerns multiple courses, so it makes sense to put more responsibility on the learners.

Virtual Model - This model relies more heavily on online learning but the learners are still expected to have some face-to-face teaching. This model is used most often, especially now as learners are not expected in the office each day. Video is a large component of this model.

Benefits of Blending

The benefits are far reaching for both the learners and trainers.

Accounting for and accountability on everyone - With blended learning, all learning styles are accounted for and you have the opportunity to get the best work out of each learner. Similarly, with the face-to-face expectation, and the analytics often available with online courses, each person's learning is monitored. There's no 'sitting at the back of class' option with an online course.

Trends and feedback - It can be difficult to know if your face-to-face teaching methods are the best they can be. With the addition of online learning you'll be able to view is learners are finding courses too difficult, archaic, or boring. You'll then have honest feedback to change up courses and make them better.

Save money and time - Online courses are cheaper to run and save a lot of time for the trainers. This means that small businesses can teach their employees as well as a large company. it also means a face-paced office doesn't have to miss out on training staff.

Personalisation and accessibility - Being able to shape a course around each learner, offer one-to-one feedback and give them advice on courses to take next is the great benefit of having an online component. Similarly, it invites staff that may be remote working/oversees to take courses and get the same level of attention as those who can come into an office setting.

Engagement - Being able to offer multimedia courses as well as face-to-face settings can create higher engagement rates. Elements like video, eBooks, podcasts, quizzes, and Gamification can be a lot more interesting than a speech or long-form content.

Commitments

As much as you may want to roll out your first Blended Learning course, it's important to remember the commitment required from both your learners and those who will be teaching the courses. Firstly, trainers must be ready to teach in this style and have a clear understanding of what they need to do in this environment. Are they ready to look at analytics, can they give feedback online to each learner? Will they edit courses based on feedback?

Similarly, learners must know what is expected of them. If they are not ready to proactively take courses and turn up to the face-to-face portion of the courses then Blended Learning won't be a success. Companies must take the time to show the learners the LMS, explain how it works and what is expected from them and the benefits it offers.

Resources you can use

Blended Learning requires video software. There is a lot out there but it's important to choose one that suits the needs of the trainer rather than the software that offers the most bells and whistles.

Google Classroom, YouTube, Zoom, Whereby and Microsoft Teams are some of the most used and trusted.

In terms of LMS, you'll want to be able to create multimedia courses, have analytics at your disposal, be able to edit courses, and talk to learners. Myskillcamp offers all of these features in an easy to use software.

If you wanted to try out this software for free, with no commitment, then book a demo. It will even be personalised to your needs.

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